Friday, November 30, 2012

Friday's Top Retail Reads


  • Can Amazon Put Brick-and-Mortar Retail Back Together Again? (TheStreet) and Amazon's Robotic Future: A Work in Progress (Businessweek) and The elephant in Amazon’s mail room (MarketWatch)
  • Dollars and Scents: The Smells That Make Shoppers Spend More (LiveScience)
  • Thanksgiving weekend shines, but overall November sales fall short at U.S. retailers (Chicago Tribune)
  • Staples Will Offer On-Demand 3-D Printing In Stores (Wired)
  • Infographic: Top 250 Internet Retailers On Social Media (Campalyst)
  • The True Religion denim label is being circled by a bevy of prospective acquirers (NY Post)
  • The Politics of Retail: Where the Red and the Blue Spend Their Green (WSJ)
  • Shopping Local Benefits The Neighborhood: Here Are The Numbers That Prove It (FastCo Exist)
  • From Fashion to Fashioning: Bloggers Taking a Turn as Designers (WWD)
  • The Retailers That Have the Most To Gain - Or Lose - This Holiday Season (Forbes)
  • Why Amazon Beats Wal-Mart: A tale from Black Friday (Slate) and Amazon More Popular Than Walmart, Target Among Well-Off Americans (AdAge)
  • Cyber Monday Was a Monster...But We Still Love Shopping in Stores (Time)
source: WSJ

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Mid-Week Retail Reads


  • The bricks-and-mortar albatross (Reuters)
  • Lower Manhattan Will Beef Up Its Retail Scene With Luxury Stores (Racked NY)
  • With a Billion Birthdays on File, Facebook Adds a Gift Store (NY Times)
  • PayPal President David Marcus On Cyber Monday, In-Store Payments, Data Strategy And More (TechCrunch)
  • Retailers Serving Striped Bass Along With Striped Shirts To Lure Shoppers (Bloomberg)
  • The Secrets Of Success For Social Retail (Business Insider)
  • Whatever name they go by, convenience strip centers dominating retail development (SCT)
  • With the proliferation of multiple touchpoints, commerce loses its linear purchase process (eMarketer)
  • Q&A With Fab.com CEO On Building A $700 Million Novelty Shop (WSJ)
  • Mobile Becomes Major Shopping Player (Online Media Daily)
  • The Many Faces of Shopping: Evolution from Physical Stores to E-commerce to Seamless Shopper Experience (Popsop)
  • Retailers Count On Giveaways, Exclusive Collections To Fight Holiday Lull (Businessweek)
  • The rise of social media in retail (The Guardian)
  • The Best Retail Landlords Realize Importance of Bricks and Clicks (TheStreet)

Black Friday Weekend Roundup

The results are in, and by all accounts Black Friday weekend - which now includes Thanksgiving Thursday, Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday (they haven't managed to brand Sunday yet) - was a blowout in terms of the number of shoppers and dollars spent, as well as the sheer amount of media and industry hype.

The National Retail Federation, based on a survey of 4,005 people of their spending intentions, estimated that 139.4 million adults spent $59.1 billion over Black Friday weekend, or 12.8% more than in 2011.

So what do the results actually tell us about what to expect for the overall holiday season? Not much.

Barry Ritholtz over at The Big Picture reminds us "that people are very bad at forecasting their own behavior," and goes on to summarize this year's coverage of "Black Friday’s Media Hall of Shame."
There is zero correlation between what people say their gift shopping intentions are on these surveys, and what they actually spend.
This might lead you to think that the media to be somewhat circumspect in reporting the breathless nonsense from an industry PR group; that merely reprinting a press release is not actual journalism; Perhaps you might suspect a lack of basic math skills would dissuade you from financial reporting.
However, you would be wrong.

Businessweek lays out a strong case for why we should take this weekend's performance with a grain of salt:


Also, keep in mind that 4 of the 5 busiest and 8 of the top 10 shopping days of the season will come in December.

However, we did learn several important things this weekend:
  • E-Commerce continues to gain momentum, with online sales on track to increase 15-20% over last year
  • Mobile devices, especially the iPad and iPhone, are becoming increasingly important consumer tools for research and purchases
  • Social commerce, for all its potential, has yet to make a dent in shopping penetration

With all that being said, here is a complete roundup of this weekend's results:

Thanksgiving Day Promotions Win Over Millions Of Holiday Shoppers (NRF)
Retail Sales Increase 2.7%, Retail Foot Traffic Up 8.2% During “Black Weekend,” (ShopperTrak)
2012 Black Friday Cyber Monday Benchmark Results (IBM)
Cyber Monday Spending Soars to $1.46 Billion, Online Sales Up 16% So Far in November (comScore)
Thanksgiving, Black Friday and Cyber Monday Mobile Commerce by the Numbers (eBay)
Insights Into Online & In-Store Retail Holiday Shopping Trends (Chase HolidayPulse)
Expect record sales for the 2012 holiday season (Adobe)

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Tuesday's Retail Reading List


  • The Death and Life of Great American Retailers (TheStreet)
  • From Hooters To Hot Buns: How Kat Cole Turned Cinnabon Into A $1 Billion Brand (Forbes)
  • Amazon takes a Page out of Facebook’s playbook with brand pages (Internet Retailer)
  • Cyber Monday Online Shopping Reaches All Time High, Increasing 30% over 2011 (IBM) and Mobile Boosts Cyber Monday; Facebook And Twitter Not So Much (Adweek)
  • Shopping's Great Generation Divide Underscores Challenge Facing Retailers (WSJ)
  • Supermarkets without cash registers, Amazon in strip malls: the future of retail is weird (Quartz)
  • Q&A: Casual Male CMO on Rethinking Retail & Branding for the Big-and-Tall Shopper (AdAge)
  • Major Retailers in Big Push to Cash in on Celebrity Clothing Lines (AP)
  • From Click to Delivery: Inside Online Mega-Giant Amazon's Cyber Monday Strategy (ABC News)
  • Shopping malls cater to shifting demographics (Reuters)
  • Despite Record Online Sales This Holiday Season, The Store Is Still King (Wired)
source: WSJ

Monday, November 26, 2012

Retail Quick Facts: 10 Things About Costco You Probably Didn't Know


Retail Reads to Start Your Week


  • Walmart's Evolution From Big Box Giant To E-Commerce Innovator (Fast Company)
  • White House Warns Looming Fiscal Cliff Threatens Consumer Spending (AP)
  • Big-Box Retailers Wrestle E-Commerce Gorilla Amazon (WSJ)
  • Infographic: The Rise of Mobile Shopping (Mashable)
  • Retail's Winners Rely on the Service-Profit Chain (HBR)
  • Former Apple Retail Chief Details Apple Store Planning And Philosophy In Unaired Video (TechCrunch)
  • Amazing Graphs That Show How Consumers' Spending Habits Change With Age (The Atlantic)
  • Microsoft's Retail Gamble is in Full Swing (PC Mag)
  • Why Tory Burch Should Be Fashion's Next Billionaire (And How Her Ex Could Stop Her) (Forbes)
  • Reinventing department stores for today's shoppers (CBS News)
  • Mobile payments and digital wallets are about to shape not only how, but where and when we buy things (ReadWrite)
  • Video: Inside Amazon's Largest Distribution Center on Cyber Monday (Bloomberg)
  • Radical ideas for saving a struggling independent bookstore (paidContent)
  • 25 surprising facts about the increasingly mobile nature of online and in-store retail (Quartz)
  • Can Canadian women's active wear brand LolĂ« challenge Lululemon's dominance? (Reuters)
The Rise of Mobile Shopping (Mashable)

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Mid-Week Reading List


  • Square: Turning smartphones into cash registers (CBS News)
  • Consumers Visit Stores to Compare Prices, But Nearly Half Make Final Purchases Online (Accenture)
  • Bigger hopes, earlier hours, more technology at play this Black Friday (Chicago Sun-Times)
  • To Lure Shoppers, Wal-Mart Tries Same-Day Delivery (NPR)
  • New body scanner offers virtual tape measure for online shopping (Reuters)
  • Infographic: Shoppers Prefer Personalization Over Privacy This Holiday Season (Mashable)
  • Navigating the Multi-channel World of Modern Marketing (Knowledge@Wharton)
  • Target, Amazon Poised to Win Black Friday (AdAge)
  • Fifth Avenue's Eye-Popping Retail Rents (WSJ)
  • The Retailer Winning the Battle for Millennial Women (Forbes)
  • Study says Twitter impressions lead to real shoppers for major retailers (Adweek)
  • Fiscal Cliff Seen as Grinch Poised to Steal Holiday Sales (Bloomberg)
  • Can Best Buy Beat Amazon with Service? (HBR)
source: Wall Street Journal

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Tuesday Retail Reads


  • Top 10 Emerging Markets for Retail Growth (WWD)
  • Most E-Commerce Froth Since 2000 Stirs Up Investor Doubts (Businessweek)
  • Twitter Sees a Surge in Retailer Activity Ahead of Holidays (CNBC)
  • Best Buy's Death by a Billion Clicks (Wired)
  • Infographic: The Retailer's Guide to Big Data (VentureBeat)
  • Big-box stores attempt to lure online shoppers (Washington Post)
  • High Demand and Limited Availability Keep Manhattan Retail Market Strong (REBNY)
  • Like it or loathe it, Thanksgiving Day shopping trend is here to stay (Reuters)
  • Digital Coupon Use Up 30.5% Through First 9 Months of 2012 (Supermarket News)
  • Retailers Add Politics and Nature to Their Holiday Worry List (NY Times)
  • The Battle for Control of the U.S. Coffee Market Rages On (Retail Traffic)
  • Smartphone shoppers poised to make a wider variety of purchases this holiday season (eMarketer)
  • Bionic Mannequins Spy on Shoppers to Boost Luxury Sales (Bloomberg)
  • New York Stores Light Holiday Windows (WWD)